Dubai Duty Free’s Executive Vice Chairman & CEO, Colm McLoughlin was honoured with the prestigious “Lifetime Achievement Award” at the inaugural Middle East & Africa Duty Free Association (MEADFA) Awards held on 28th November at the Art Hotel & Resort in Bahrain.
The awards were held to coincide with the 20th MEADFA conference which was held in Bahrain for the first time and brought together 440 delegates. The awards ceremony was held during the MEADFA Gala dinner and in addition to the “Lifetime Achievement” award, the airport retailer also won the Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility Award., a joint winner with Bitmore.
Organised by the MEADFA board the new awards programme, which is now part of the annual conference, recognises innovative, dynamic and world-class travel retail specialists in the Middle East and Africa region.
The special “Lifetime Achievement” recognition acknowledged McLoughlin for his outstanding contribution to the travel retail industry and his strong leadership of Dubai Duty Free since 1983. While the Sustainability and CSR Award was awarded to the airport retailer for its commitment to sustainability and promotion of environmental projects both within and outside the organisation.
Commenting on the awards McLoughlin said, “I am delighted and very touched to receive this special award at the inaugural MEADFA Awards, it is a huge honour and I am very grateful to the MEADFA board for nominating me and to the judging panel. It is also terrific to be recognised for Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility. I attribute this recognition to our team of staff for their continuous effort in making our business successful and, of course, to our Chairman, HH Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum.”
Ramesh Cidambi, COO of Dubai Duty Free accepted the award in Bahrain on behalf of Mr. McLoughlin and he was joined by other Dubai Duty Free officials including Salah Tahlak, Joint COO, Sinead El Sibai, SVP – Marketing, Bernard Creed, SVP – Finance, Mona Al Ali, SVP – Human Resources, Michael Schmidt, SVP – Retail, Sharon Beecham, SVP – Purchasing and Zayed Al Shebli, SVP – Loss Prevention & Corporate Security in accepting the other award.
A special independent judging panel with a strong background in the travel retail industry adjudicated the awards. Prior to the jury’s evaluation and scoring, the MEADFA committee examined each award submission to ensure its completion.